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Sakmongkol ak 47

Monday 8 July 2013

National Reconciliation: Nuremberg Revengeful Justice or RTC Restorative Justice?

I have to put up a caveat: this is my personal opinion as a writer and blogger. It is not Pakatan’s official position.
PM Najib spoke about national reconciliation in parliament. Yes- he is becoming quite well known for coining big slogans. He started with all the GTP, ETP, EPP, NKRA, PDP etc. it must have become an addiction.
Now is National Reconciliation. Unfortunately his people in parliament take the National Reconciliation proposal as a means to do a Nuremberg kind of justice. Impose the victor’s justice on the opposition representing 51% of the voting population. Move on means accepting BN victory and be quiet about it and allow the winner do what it pleases.
This time, Najib needs help from the opposition to ensure that his National Reconciliation isn’t turned into another of his useless slogans. We are 89 strong.
He has only given but one precondition- that the results of GE 13 must be accepted by everyone. My reading of this is that he is willing to sit down and sort out contentious issues and to engage the opposition to hear out matters they feel strongly about.  
I think we should engage him. But then he has to offer something in return. Is he offering us a victor’s justice/ the Nuremberg kind of Justice?
Most of us know what Nuremberg represented. It represented retributive justice. A court of justice was established by the victorious allies to try Nazi war criminals and other German military leaders after the 2nd world war. The allies called it de-nazification. Most of those tried were sentenced to death. It was justice imposed by the victors which was retaliatory and revengeful in nature.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission otherwise known as the TRC method, is a court-like restorative justice body assembled in South Africa after the abolition of apartheid. To restore as much as possible the loss by victims by making the perpetrators of wrongs compensate by reparation. In exchange, the perpetrator gets amnesty. Not all, only the deserving ones cleared by the commission.  Its objective is to get restorative justice.
The Najib government of course hasn’t done any crimes against humanity. We have no war criminals to prosecute. We don’t have the African Apartheid system. We didn’t fight on any of those issues.
We fought for a reformation of the election commission. We fought for electoral reforms. We fought against corruption, mis-governance to replace with good governance, we fought for more democracy and we fought for an end to race politics in Malaysia. We fought for integrity, accountability and adherence to the rule of law. These are the noble objectives said out in the King’s Speech at the opening session of the current parliament.
And So Najib wants to offer us which? The victor’s Nuremberg justice or the TRC restorative justice?
 Personally I have said and still maintain, Najib is a fairly decent fellow. That concession given will not stop me from believing through personal knowledge, that as a leader, Najib is a dud. But if more people believe in him, there is nothing I can do other than sticking to my conviction about the leadership qualities of Najib. I can’t help those who get wet dreams when describing and extolling the virtues of Najib as PM.
Despite my own feelings, I think Najib has some sense of morality and I would therefore think, he wants to choose restorative justice. But he first has to tackle the bigots and the right wing elements within his group. From the belligerent and one-sided demands of BN backbenchers, its clear, what they mean by reconciliation is the Nuremberg kind of Justice.  Meaning, we move on by being subservient in exchange of whatever concessions are given at the pleasure of the victorious party.
Actually Najib does not have to offer any reconciliatory overtures. He won 133 seats and because we follow the first-past-the-post system, he has the right to form a government. He has legal legitimacy. The only reason he offers reconciliation is because he knows he hasn’t got moral legitimacy.   
As much as I dislike it, he is correct to demand his precondition. BN won and is the government. But whether we accept the manner by which they won the elections is a different matter. But equally also, however we feel about it, our feelings cannot alter the fact. BN won.
How do we overcome this impasse? If reconciliation is desired, then some sacrifices have to be made and given.  
And what elements of restorative justice do we want to put up for negotiation? Maybe top on the agenda is the restructuring of the election commission. Maybe a change in the manner funds is allocated to parliamentarians. The opposition needs funds to service their constituencies. It is simply not right for voters who voted in PR to be starved out of much needed funds. For those who are not aware, neither ADUN nor MPs hold funds personally. The funds are available through the District offices and various government departments.
Maybe get some justice on the issues the opposition fought for in the elections- that corrupt leaders are brought to justice and demanding they restore the wealth they have taken in return for amnesty. Reform of the electoral process. Establishment of a really bipartisan select committees having real oversight powers over so many areas. These are meaningful and worthwhile objectives worth striving for in exchange for willingness to accept the results of GE13.
The results were: BN got 133 seats and PR got 89 seats. Because it has the most number of seats, BN is the government.  I don’t think we can change this fact by illegitimate means. And by that I mean, we can’t change the government by way of rallies. And we don’t intend to use it that way- only BN makes propaganda material of these rallies. The rallies such as Black 505 are not meant to do that but are carried out to advertise to the public that the SPR was conspiratorial. It conspired with the incumbent to ensure the incumbent retains power.
We can only change through elections and however unpalatable it is, we have to wait for the next general elections.
Otherwise there will be anarchy. My own experience in the recent elections, by and large, the election officials manning the counting and polling stations were decent people. But I am suspicious of the supervising officers in dark suits hovering around at the counting and polling stations. Admittedly, unless I can prove any wrong doings, my suspicions remain at just that.
The objective of national reconciliation is to bring opposing sides of the political divide to sit down together, sort out differences and come to peace. The whole idea being, once differences are put aside, everyone can carry on to perform their respective roles. The government continues to carry out the business of government and the opposition carries out is duties provided by law, as his majesty’s opposition with all the respect and recognition due to it.


bruno,  8 July 2013 at 03:23  

Dato,if Najib wants a reconcilation,there is nothing wrong to sit down and have a friendly chit chat at what he has to say or offer.The PR has nothing to lose to hear him out.Afterall,it will be much easier to deal with Najib then later on with Muhyiddin.

But as long as Anwar is the de-facto leader of PR,he will have nothing less than the PM'ship to have a pow-wow with Umno/BN.So the PR and BN will be at loggerheads till Anwar steps down and another leader takes over or till after GE14th.

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 07:34  

Salam Dato!

Dato suspicious the men in black suit tu memang benar. Semua kepala SPR memang agen umno. Mereka juga telah menipu di Kedah. Banyak Parlimen mereka telah kalah sebenarnya. Sebab itu Anwar telah kata PR menang semenjak pukul 8 malam lagi. Tapi SPR penipu tu telah membuat silap mata dengan lampu blackout ketika pengiraan undi dan kepala SPR juga enggan memberi Borang 14 yang menyebabkan PR kalah.Kemenangan mereka Di sebelah utara banyak disebabkan oleh keengganan kepala SPR menyerah Borang 14. Di kawasan Adun juga banyak berlaku termasuk di kawasan anak Mahathir yang dia sebenarnya telah kalah.

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 07:39  

Najib is weak, he is indecisive and wll basuh tangan to play safe. The best thing is to remove Najib and move on...he is not a leader, just get him out of UMNO and Pytrajaya.

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 08:51  

What about the caveat of the 51% ?

"That, to prevent the many inconveniences apparently arising from the long continuance of the same persons in authority...."

"That the power of this and all future representaives of this nation, is inferior only to their who choose them..."

[Re: Agreement of the People - 28 October 1647]

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 09:12  

Yes, Najib is a dud. Even those in UMNO think so.
He can only talk but when he comes to action, he is a dud.
Being a weak leader I doubt he can even make ONE concession towards the Opposition. His concept of Reconciliation is "accept the results and move on". No other deals.

ordinary malaysian 8 July 2013 at 10:01  

Najib may have all the good intentions, but he is in no position to go through with what he promises. We just need to recall all that he had promised and note that few if hardly any, or at least in any meaningful sense, has been fulfilled. Reconciliation is a word forced upon him by the minority vote that Umno/Bn only managed to secure. I have to disagree, you don't win by cheating - there cannot be winning by cheating - if you cheated, no matter how impressive the number of seats you "win". So, there no issue of accepting and moving on to talk about. If you cheated to win, you have not won. That is so clearly obvious that we don't even have to talk about reconciliation. If you have won, without cheating, and still the win is a minority win, reconciliation makes sense. Otherwise, we might as well have done away with elections and just accept that winning by cheating is winning. You know how it can't be otherwise.

bumi-non-malay 8 July 2013 at 11:46  

I feel like the 12 year old girl raped by that Sabah muslim man.....and now have to marry the rapist in a decision of Sama suka sama type of RECOCILIATION justice......

I am sure Many Malaysia are equally ENRAGED by the cheat of UMNO-Bn via Indelible EC ink to create another 5 year of UMNO-BN - DEMONcracy?? 60% of angry Malaysia are increasing to 70%.....then we have no choice but to RECONCILE UMNO-BN into Sg Buloh Hotel and Tell them in the face....we voted for cheaper petrol, free education, Abolish TOL and Price Reduce cost of Living.....Not the opposite and INCREASING CRIME....

Thank You Criminals for targeting the UMNO-BN leaders House and their Relatives and Cronies......they have ALL the Money sampai Khairy pun Diam berapa JUTA barangan sudah diKebas......ada rumour kata $1,000,000 ++++ Intan Berlian & CASH $$$$$ kena Sapu....takut Lapor kerana takut diKebas Rakyat...Padan Muka......Itu Tan Sri jangan Pandai sangat.....tunggu Balasan!!....Terima Kasih UMNO-PDRM!!

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 12:21  

"The Najib government of course hasn’t done any crimes against humanity. We have no war criminals to prosecute."

I beg to differ with your above statement. There have been a lot of crimes against humanity done by UMNO/BN. Not in the form of physical war but their oppressive manner of dealing with people who do not support them. And these people are the majority now based on popular votes in the recent GE13.

Pok Li

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 14:07  

Najib CANNOT be trusted anymoore.

Hamdan Man,  8 July 2013 at 14:28  

Salam SAK,

Saya seorang silent reader dalam blog Tuan.

Mohon Tn blog bbrp artikel menyentuh agenda DAP vis-a-vis kepentingan Melayu. Saban hari saya membaca hasrat DAP menghancur Melayu dsb. Kdg2 saya berasa ia tohmahan liar semata-mata.

Apa-apa pun, saya agak heran sedikit kenapa DAP spontan ke hadapan apabila muncul isu2 menyentuh org Cina tetapi tidak mengambil reaksi apabila tiba giliran Melayu. Saya sangsi konsep Malaysian Malaysia spt sy sangsi konsep 1Malaysia.

Terima Kasih

Hamdan Man
'4ever apolitcal'

Unknown 8 July 2013 at 14:49  

i have no prob to accept the result of election in 2 conditions....

no 1... all parties and NGO's allowed to speak to public on tv and radio... negara ni bukan negara komunis dengan media ala Nazi....

no 2... election conducted with supervision from United Nation.... da tak percaya orang 2 atasan SPR....

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 15:44  

The question will be " Is Najib statesman enough to take the challenge?"

OneMalaysian,  8 July 2013 at 18:15  

Dear Sakmongkol

We really can’t tell what kind of justice we will get. Najib seems more like the titular head of UMNO, not its real, effective leader. This might be because he was not directly elected by UMNO delegates, but perhaps more because of his own personality: a need to be liked/loved, which results in an unwillingness to confront and take hard but needed decisions. In short he is not a leader but more a weather vane, changing direction when the wind from the right wing of UMNO blows. That is the essential problem with Najib. So you are right; he is a “decent” fellow by the low standards of UMNO, but in politics that is hardly enough. A politician must be willing to risk unpopularity to get things done and is prepared to let posterity judge his actions.

So we will muddle through. There will be no reconciliation. There will no repeal of unpopular laws. It will be more of the same. We just need to work towards GE14. Your political stance on reconciliation is laudable, but you will be disappointed.

Unknown 8 July 2013 at 19:08  

This NR must be treated with utmost care because it is just another term for the post 1969 loss by Alliance, post May 13!
Somehow it like a broken record, just words no meat no substance! The Malays term it as `melepaskan batuk di tangga!'
To bolster its shaky numbers in Parliament, Alliance offered to form a United Front. Back then, Gerakan had won Penang, PAS had won Kelantan and and DAP,had left UMNO Selangor with a slim majority! PPP was the fourth Opposition party.
so all took the bait offered except DAP, to form Barisan National in 1973!
National Front, National Reconciliation? Something familiar,isn't it?
So I am reminded of TGNA caution!
`Jangan kena patuk ular dua kali dari lubang yang sama!'
And PAS had the bitter experience.
Besides, considering PM Najib's well documented past flip-flops (especially with the rescinding of the Seditious Act)and the `reward' appointment of a secondary school lever crony as the Chairman of a RM53 billion strong Tabung Haji,who would trust this suspect mental and faculty strength UMNO shhhssssth.. in a bind!
As long as EC duo are not dismissed no man worth his salt would sit and reconcile..
why, tis PM is probably at the end of his tenure too, so perhaps PR should wait till after 24th July to see if he walks the talk..OR wait up till after November UMNO GA.

Anonymous,  8 July 2013 at 23:02  


you must be a joker to suggest that Najib brings the corrupted leaders to justice and recoup the stolen wealth. Now, would any BN leader throw himself / herself into jail and transfer money from their bank accounts to the government coffer?

Unknown 9 July 2013 at 00:02  

perubahan akan bermula sedikit demi sedikit selepas mahathir tiada di dunia ni.... selagi dia masih ada, memang susah umno di tundukkan.....

orang tua nyanyuk ni baru sambut birthday no 88 dengan vincent tan, bapak judi negara...

real nightmare with this dr....

Anonymous,  9 July 2013 at 07:40  

Dear Datuk Sak

There is a U.S. term for this:

NATO i.e. "No Action, Talk Only"

Phua Kai Lit

Anonymous,  9 July 2013 at 08:04  

On one hand, Najib talks about National reconciliation and on the other hand, he allows or even encourage Utusan to whack the other races. This is typical Najib. People should read his statements with the opposite meaning in mind.

Anonymous,  9 July 2013 at 08:22  

Dato', UMNO will never allow SPR to close shop as they are their fixed deposit..Utusan included.

BN will always win even with SPR around. Looking at the election night returns and you will know. Results in favour of Pakatan were not announced becos of no Borang 14 which gives room for last minute hanky panky.

May Allah curse them.

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